Home Improvement: Week 1 Summary

Audrey and I bought our first house in Venice, CA. We bought it with the intention to fix it up and sell it in a couple of years. We have until the end of the month to at least finish the walls, flooring and painting. It's an odd-shaped house that has been added onto a couple of times. Our main goals with the first phase of renovation are to completely redo the kitchen to open it up, replace the windows, put in bamboo flooring and paint the inside.

Last weekend I started demolishing the kitchen, so the contractors could come in and start working on Monday. It saved us a lot of money and I got to spend some quality time with the house, which I can't do during the week. I don't know how Audrey does it. She's a total rock star. She has basically been playing general contractor since we started and continues to oversee everything.

There were a few of freakouts this week. I totally freaked about the kitchen walls and ceiling coming down. It was traumatic to see so much damage to this house we just spent a lot of money on already. The good news is, we're using the general contractor that worked on Audrey's first store. He wants her business for the next ones, so he's doing a favor. Needless to say, it's saving money.

The second freak out was about the size of the range Audrey got. We had previously agreed on a 30" because of the small size of the kitchen and the limited counter space. She ended up ordering a 36", which I made quite a stink about. After some yelling and screaming, I think we agreed that a 30" would be better. We hope it's not too late.

The third freak out was about a decision to put a 3/4 bathroom in the garage, which will be Audrey's office. Quite simply, it's not necessary. She got convinced by the plumber that because the additional cost wouldn't be much and would add value to the house, she should do it. First of all, it's not going to add much value to the house, the garage will be shown as an office and no one expects to see a 3/4 bathroom in the office and it's just going to take up additional space that she could use for storage. Screaming, crying, yelling and hugging ensued.

Today we got to see how the walls were shaping up. It was a dramatic improvement from yesterday. I called my dad tonight because I had emailed him the URL for the slide show and he said, "I'm glad I was sitting down when I looked at those photos!" Out of context, they do look pretty bad, but the work they got done today was great.

I'll be ripping out the carpet in the master bedroom this weekend, painting the samples on walls, getting ethernet cable so the electrician can install outlets in a few of the rooms and picking up some lighting.

Appliances were ordered this week:

Brad Barrish @bradbarrish